Virent wins technology prize

Virent Energy Systems Inc. in Madison, Wis., won the 2008 ICIS Chemical Business Innovation Award for the Best Innovation by a Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise. The company received the award for its BioForming technology, which uses a catalyst to convert plant sugars into hydrocarbon molecules. The hydrocarbons can be processed into gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and other chemicals. The judges voted unanimously to present Virent with the award, citing the technology's market potential and its ability to provide a gasoline alternative for use in today's engines.